One of the favorite games of my little granddaughters in Maryland is to play virtual hide and seek with me. They hide and their daddy uses his phone and my voice to tell him where to look. The giggles are so precious, even as I am seeking them. And they are young, so hiding in the same place repeatedly is a thing with them. Recently, the youngest (who will be three in a few weeks) grabs her mommy by the hand and insists that her mommy hide with her. When I read this Scripture verse this morning, this game came to my mind. Evie’s refuge is her mommy; she knows that she is “safe” with her.
Likewise, I know that I am safe in the arms of the Father. He is my refuge, no matter what the circumstances. The last two weeks have been hard. I mentioned something previously about our home in Pennsylvania. It was the first house we had ever purchased after over twenty military moves, and I was like a momma bird with her nest. I ordered carpeting, decorated and put up curtains that I had actually picked out. We had planned to make that our real home together, pouring time and energy into making it a refuge. But then, the unthinkable happened. I couldn’t find a teaching job in PA. I tried everything that I knew to do, praying constantly for God to show me what He wanted me to do. In the end, we left our home in PA and I got a job in MD. Our home that I had created was rented to various other people and has been for the last thirty years.
Two weeks ago, we discovered that our property management company had sought approval to put our house under Section 8 rentals, without our prior knowledge or approval. My husband, who worked in real estate after retiring from the Air Force, was visibly upset. Section 8 housing usually means lower property values and can often mean renters who do not take good care of the property. We tried in vain to contact the owner of the office in PA, but he never returned our calls. Frustrated, I called the home office in TX and got in touch with a nice lady who promised to investigate what was going on. She called back and told us that the house is already leased under Section 8, again without our knowledge of approval. We cannot get out of the lease, so we are stuck. That puts us in the uncomfortable position of having to try to sell the house when the lease is up. My husband and I prayed and think that will be what’s best, but we will continue to pray. We don’t want to be sued for discrimination, but neither do we want to have a home that is losing value annually.
Anyway, throughout this nightmare, my stress level has been high, so I have been praying a lot. God has reminded me daily that He is right there with me. He is my refuge, the place I can go to be safe from all of the cares of the world. I am trusting Him to show us what to do when the lease is up and when and how we should move and leave Virginia behind. I have to be reminded daily because somehow I am hard-headed enough to try to handle things on my own, get stressed and then God’s Spirit gently reminds me that He is walking through this with me. He is helping me on the multiple phone conversations with the nice lady in TX who has taken over our account, he is guiding me as I write e-mails to the office in PA concerning the errors on their invoice and their changing our property without our permission. He has even been there when I angrily cried out that the man in PA who was supposed to look out for our best interests betrayed us and lied to us. God reminded me that I must forgive him and move on. Honestly, I am working on that. When he comes to mind, I ask God to help me to forgive him and his costly errors that have already cost us thousands of dollars in repairs that may not have even been necessary. Like little Evie, I have to have God’s presence with me so that I feel safe from all that is happening.
Is there something hard that you are faced with today? God is your refuge, your place of safety. Are you feeling assaulted by the things of the world that you can do nothing about? God is your refuge, your place of safety. I thought I knew these promises, having leaned on them for years. But then, the enemy came and showed me that I was not leaning or hiding in God; I was trusting myself to make things right. That never works because God is my refuge, my place of safety. I’m still learning daily to let go and let God be God. As someone said, this, too, shall pass.
Blessings, my friends, for a lovely day filled with insights from the Heavenly Father!